Church of Scotland
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Church leader pays tribute to missing friend

Tue 06 Feb 2018
By Press Association

A church minister has appealed for help to "bring home" the bodies of two fishermen whose boat capsized in a sea loch last month.

Duncan MacDougall and Przemek Krawczyk were on board the Nancy Glen when it got into trouble and sank in Loch Fyne, Argyll and Bute, on January 18.

A fundraising campaign to raise the prawn trawler from the bottom of the sea loch and recover the men's bodies has so far raised well over £200,000.

 

Church of Scotland minister Rev John MacGregor said Mr MacDougall, the vessel's skipper, was a dear friend whom he had known for most of his life.

Mr MacGregor, who grew up in Tarbert, said the tragedy has devastated the village as he appealed to Kirk members in Scotland and further afield to donate what they can to the special fund to "bring the boys home".

Mr MacGregor, of Cadder Parish Church in Bishopbriggs, East Dunbartonshire, said: "When I heard the news, it was hard to believe that trapped on board was a man whom I have known most of my life.

"Duncan MacDougall will be remembered as a great guy and an excellent football player.

"He played for a boys' team which I managed over 30 years ago. He was a very outgoing and popular young man."

Mr MacGregor said his friend - a married man with two young children - had "everything to live for".

"He was a leader who touched so many lives," he added.

On the day of the tragedy, the alarm was raised by a third fisherman, who was pulled from the water by the crew of a passing boat.

The trawler is now thought to be sitting at a depth of 459ft near Barmore Island, with a sonar sweep of the area understood to have been carried out by marine accident investigators on Monday.

The Clyde Fishermen's Trust (CFT) set up a fundraising campaign to recover the missing men and support their families, which has raised more than £200,000 in a couple of weeks.

On Saturday, hundreds of people attended a special service on the quayside at Tarbert, during which a candle was lit and will continue to burn until the missing men are returned home.

Mr MacGregor said locals have shown "amazing spirit" as they work to raise money for the men's families.

"This is a huge project and it needs more than the local people - it needs governments and churches to raise the profile of this tragedy," he said.

"I plead with the members of the Church of Scotland to help the village of Tarbert.

"To pray for it, to give generously to the fund and to speak to those with the power and authority to help."

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